With Mother’s Day just around the corner, we’ve asked one of our awesome influencers, Jessica Tondre (below), to write about her thoughts and experiences as an active mom. Being a mom is hard enough; staying active and finding that well deserved ‘me time’ makes the job even harder. Read more for Jessica’s personal experience being a mom as well as some expert tips for how to stay active. This one’s for you, moms!
“In order to actually accomplish something, you have to want it and you have to feel like you deserve it. Often we begin something because our friends are doing it, because our spouse wants it for us or because we impulsively see that it looks doable. We see that the task is a few steps (whether a recipe, workout, or weight loss) and think ‘I can do that.’
But before you take on a big task, like transforming yourself, you have to constantly remember the ‘WHY’ behind it.
That ‘WHY’ may be different for each one of you moms out there.
When you look up weight loss for moms on Pinterest or see magazine covers or marketing strategies, they advertise to the tired, desperate, that-used-to-be-me mom out there, who believes the ‘lose the pooch diet,’ ‘8 exercises to banish the bulge,’ or ’30 min Busy Mom workout,’ will work.
But I’m giving it to you straight here. They’re targeting your weaknesses: your ‘pooch,’ your exhaustion, your complete and utter lack of time to yourself. And, for God’s sake, if you have any time, you don’t want to be working out or meal prepping.
If you’ve had kids, whether they are infants or older, it doesn’t get easier. It just gets different.
What I mean is, the infancy stage is rough. It’s so amazing and rewarding but wreaks havoc on your body, your mind and relationships due to lack of sleep primarily and becoming accustomed to the newness of the change in family dynamic. Then they become toddlers and they can’t communicate so they cry and whine for everything. And that makes you want to drink constantly.
I kid. Kind of.
And then they grow into children and you think it will get easier with school but you become a constant carpooler and activity hauler. And school functions seem like they happen weekly!
But I’ve digressed. My point is, it’s easy to think ‘I only deserve 30 minutes.’ And some days maybe that’s all you get. But let me tell you, I know many moms who train for marathons (myself included), half and full Ironmans and Crossfit competitions and other events requiring vigorous training.
You don’t have to want to compete. You don’t have to want a six pack. What I’m pretty sure you want is some me-time. I’m also pretty sure you’d like to see the old you back. You’d also like to be the best mom and wife possible. This goes back to the WHY I mentioned initially. Yours may be more elaborate than this.
But in order to be the best to others, YOU have to be the best YOU possible!
So how do you do that?
First figure out what it is that is your biggest hindrance to working out as a mom. Is it childcare? Do you not think you deserve this? Do you feel selfish? Hate waking up early or going late? Too much on your plate? People can constantly throw answers to your excuses but if they don’t know the obstacle, it won’t do any good. So take a good long look at yourself and ask yourself what it is holding you back?
Here’s some advice to all my busy moms out there:
- Prioritize yourself. This was the hardest for me post-kids. Make working out/running an appointment and schedule it into your calendar as you would a doctor appointment. Know the time you will go and stick to it.
- Give up the guilt. You take care of yourself so you can be the best mom you can be is. It’s not selfish. You are setting a wonderful example to your kids about living a healthy lifestyle and taking care of your body.
- Enlist a mommy friend and take turns 3x a week watching each others’ children, so you can go for a solo one hour run or walk.
- Wake up and workout before your kids wake up. If evening workouts aren’t your thing, and you don’t like to do them in the early morning, make that appointment as soon as the hubs gets off work. It’s a date with yourself, remember?
- Vary your workouts so you don’t get bored. There are so many great non-gym workouts available just by stepping out your door or downloading an app.
- Workout with other mom friends (this might mean bringing the little ones in tow) – Classes like Stroller Strides are great for this and keep the little kids entertained, too.
- If you must, kill 2 birds with one stone. Walk the dog (a little faster than usual) or run while the kids bike ride along side you. It’s not optimal but it’s something.
Remember, when we are tired, we often make poor eating choices. Make the decision if you haven’t already to stop eating your children’s food. Whether it’s when you’re prepping Goldfish for them in sandwich bags or pretzels, even if it’s healthy food, those are mindless calories, not to mention, intended for your kids. It adds up. Make conscious decisions about food and allow for indulgences.
I’ve always said ‘is this worth it.’ Ask yourself that and you’d be surprised at the answer many times.
All that said, I’m busy and I’ve got to stop writing for now. I’d love to hear your suggestions for staying fit as a busy mom, too! Feel free to add them or give me feedback in the comments!
Want to hear more from Jessica? Be sure to check out her Instagram account (@Jessrunsblessed) or follow her blog. Be sure to enter in our Mother’s Day Giveaway, it’s not too late to win a free Lava Orange BTS Pro!